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Tinitus after every apnoe

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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Well-Known Member
Feb 10, 2004

anybody has experience with tinitus after apnoe?
I have it nearly every time after apnoe, lasting for 1-2 days.
It's not very loud, but disturbing.

This is just an uneducated guess, but it sounds like you are very slow at equalizing and are building up a lot of preasure on the ear which is being transmitted to the inner ear by the little bones in the middle ear. If that is the case, be very careful. A friend of mine on a scuba dive could not clear and kept going. He ended up pushing one of those bones into his inner ear and disarticulating the others, permanent hearing damage.

Do you dive in very cold water? I occassionally experience tinnitus, and when I was younger, it was correlated with getting cold water in my ears, and was often followed by an ear infection (swimmer's ear). You may want to try wearing earplugs; I recommend Doc's Proplugs (we love you, Doc), which allow a small amount of water into the outer ears and trap it there, where it is warmed by your body. It may also help obviate excessive bone growth.

There seem to be two forms of tinnitus, only one of which involves an actual sound. You may want to have somebody listen to your ears and mouth to see which you have. In my case, and in most cases, it's the "imagined" kind, whose cause is not known, but may vary between individuals. The "real" kind may involve weird things such as turbulence in cranial arteries, which becomes amplified when you open your Eustacian tubes.

As far as I can imagine, holding your breath cannot cause tinnitus. It's probably related either to pressure (following Connor's suggestion, or a Eustacian tube issue) or temperature.


P.S. I wonder how many freedivers suffer tinnitus, and how the numbers compare to nonfreedivers....
Elaborating a bit more on what Connor said:

If you equalize too forcefuly, or too late, the sudden forceful increase of pressure can rapture your eardrum (but you would've probably notocied that).
What can also happen is, that instead of rapturing your eardrum a shockwave can also bounce off of it to the other side of your middle ear which is where the oval window located - it separates between your middle ear and your inner ear.
This shockwave can cause tinitus, and can also rapture the oval window, which if so happens/happened, you might need surgery, and might suffer partial/full hearing loss. Sounds like the case Connor mentioned above.

If the case is because of faulty equalization, it might be solved if you'll equalize more frequently (yes, even twice or thrice per meter), and less forcefully - no force is needed usually with frequent enough equalization. You can also try alternating between Frenzel and Valsalva, incase you feel one of them gives you more control on the force used. Maintaining a good body posture is also beneficial for easy equalization. If you dive with a hood, make sure it is flooded before you dive (making your outer ear full of water).

I suggest that in the next times you dive, you'll make sure which of the possibilities above might be causing that tinitus, if it's cold water, faulty equalization and such.
If it doesn't solve the problem, then I'de say you better get to an ENT or diving doctor ( not sure which is better for that:confused: ), and let him check that, you don't wanna risk permanent damage.

I think that if you're having bad sympthoms, you should not keep diving before them.

Good luck and keep us updated. :)
Re: Elaborating a bit more on what Connor said:


Originally posted by DeepThought

I suggest that in the next times you dive, you'll make sure which of the possibilities above might be causing that tinitus, if it's cold water, faulty equalization and such.
Good luck and keep us updated. :)

thats what i am doing right now.
i write a diving diary with focus on
tinitus strength, temperature and the aproximate number and depth of the dives.

about the proplugs: how do i order without knowing the right size?
the next dealer is quite far away.

i keep you informed, when i have results.

Hi everyone.
I have something funny in my hear as well these days.
I hear the blood flow in my hear.
I don't think it is related to freediving because I have already had that before (But it is true I have always done some spearfishing at least), and because I never had any problems with equalizing and am quite gently when doing so.
But this time it does not seem to want to stop.
That is quite annoying when I am going to bed.
It sounds like a vein touching the air drum or a blood pressure too high ( which I don't think, as I went to the doctor last week and he said the pressure was ok: 11/7 if you know what it means, I don't)
Has any one experienced that or has any idea about what it is?
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